UKIP: We’ve proved we can get votes in Wales, England and Northern Ireland…

Fascinating little line here (h/t Malc) from Nigel Farage:

“We’ve proved we can get votes in Wales, England and Northern Ireland. We’re still untested in Scotland,” he [Farage] said. “We’ve not had an opportunity to test Ukip policies with the Scottish people for a very long time.” Asked about Ukip’s chances, he was optimistic. “I wouldn’t be at all surprised if we did quite creditably.”

Malc writes:

My recollection is that UKIP’s entire electoral presence in NI amounts to:
— David McNarry, the Strangford AM defector from the UUP,
— Henry Reilly, Councillor for The Mournes

He’s clearly not impressed, but I would note that this does put UKIP ahead of British Labour, the UK Conservatives, or the Liberal Democrats, although to be fair to two of those they currently harbour no ambitions to run in Northern Ireland against local partner parties.

Reilly’s showing wasn’t half bad for a councillor in the 2011 Assembly elections. He’s going to make John McCallister’s return in the next Assembly elections even more problematic than it would have been.

Strictly speaking, David McNarry has yet to be tested in an open election. And Reilly had a huge personal vote.

The thing is, even given their current rise in the polls, UKIP may yet turn out to be a latter day SDP of the right. But they’ve already been around for a while and are pushing somewhat at a half open door as people pull away from international co-operative ventures like the EU.

The real test of Mr Farage’s boast may come with the next European Parliamentary election.

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  • seamusot

    Certainly calling members of SNP fascists (the irony of it) will hardly enhance the utter minuscule prospect of YouKIP progressing in Scotland. I would bet more money on the chances of the Albanian Left Handed Scizho Raving Loony Party.

  • sherdy

    Nigel does his best to promote everything English/British.
    How English/British is the name Farage?
    Should anyone tell him he’s actually of French descent?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Reilly’s showing wasn’t half bad for a councillor in the 2011 Assembly elections. He’s going to make John McCallister’s return in the next Assembly elections even more problematic than it would have been.

    McAllister will be slightly more transfer friendly for nationalists this time, and considerably more transfer friendly than Reilly. Without seeing details of the count it is hard to say but I’d have thought McAllister’s voters would be moderate minded types who refuse to switch to the DUP – and UKIP are likely to present themselves as an alternative to the DUP.

  • Barry the Blender

    At the moment I’d say that the last seat in South Down would be a 4 way fight between Reilly, McCallister, UUP candidate and SDLP 3rd runner.

  • I think that UKIP’s major political contribution in NI will prove to be its role in the continuing collapse of the UUP. For older, more conservative UUP voters and members/office holders who still regard the DUP as the enemy, UKIP provides an acceptable alternative. So this gives a fourth party for the UUP to lose assets to along with the DUP, Alliance, and Jasil.

  • Mick Fealty

    Reilly still has something to take from McC and Wells when you consider he now has three years to prep and that last time he polled a local council+ score…

  • Mick Fealty

    If they ran him for Europe that would get him the profile he needs in other parts of South Down to do something interesting…

  • Interesting how everyone else’s take differs from mine.

    I was merely observing that Farage’s “proved we can get votes in Wales, England and Northern Ireland” was a bit … well … hyperbolic.

    You are telling me that Henry Reilly, from hardly the most representative part of South Down, which itself is hardly the most representative part of NI, is a player. And that UKIP in NI (which operates from said Henry Reilly’s home address) is a factor. Hmmm …

    I know “swivel-eyed loons” are the flavour of the weekend.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Mick,

    I hate to be cynical but Henry Reilly and those who share his perspective do not “prep”. They issue press releases with the usual way-out-there bile, and then ask people to endorse that each time an election comes around. A quick perusal of their website confirms press releases which are essentially Stormont sucks, the EU sucks, and UKIP are great.

    This sort of electioning works quite well here but not so well elsewhere in the UK, which makes me think that UKIP’s seats here are among the safest in the country. Food for though for those on the mainland.

  • Teri

    So Farage thinks 2 years is a long time as that is when UKIP tried their luck in Scotland the last time. It was for the Holyrood Elections and if I remember correctly,they got 0.28 per cent of the vote. I doubt if it will have increased much sine then.

  • seamusot

    Nige Fartage-Garbage has as much relevance to Ireland as Scotland. This idiot and his loony party in a recent Scottish poll received 2 votes from a poll of 1002. Google. The empire is over – colonialism, plantation, slavery, invasion, monarchy etc all have past sell by dates.